Posts tagged ‘Lacuna’

Cliffs Wine Picks – May 11, 2015 to May 17, 2015

 

2011 Lacuna Wines Proprietary Red Blend

2004 Bodegas y Viñedos Montecastro y Llanahermosa Ribera del Duero

2011 Elyse Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley

2011 Casey Flat Ranch Open Range

2014 Château de Campuget Costières-de-Nîmes Rosé Tradition de Campuget

2007 Westerhold Family Vineyards Syrah Westerhold Vineyard

 

 

 

2011 Lacuna Wines Proprietary Red Blend – $28.99

Most people probably have not heard of this winery.  I was lucky to hear about it only because the winemaker is Morgan Twain-Peterson from Bedrock Winery.

 

This vintage is the first “official” release for the winery, but I was luck to also be able to get a couple bottles of their 2010 vintage.  It looks like the earlier vintage was pretty much gobbled up by restaurants.

 

This vintage is a blend of 85% Syrah, 4% Petite Sirah, 3% Carignan, 2% Zinfandel, 6% Viognier from old vine and cooler sites in Sonoma County.

 

This has 14.3% alcohol and is sealed with a natural cork.

 

The Winery

Lacuna is a collaborative venture between four partners Aaron, Nick, Pete and Morgan.  Our collective and longstanding passion for wine and food enticed us into the industry.

 

Now, after years of experience in many facets of the business we are happy and excited to offer a wine of our own.  Drawing from elements that have shaped our philosophy and preferences for wines that have origins both near and far we aspired to create a wine that is characteristic of California but also connected to a European tradition of balance and harmony.

 

Our vision took almost ten years to realize as we were engaged in our professions as wine importers, consultants, sommeliers and brand managers.  The process included endless speculation and, at times, utter confusion on how to get there.  Fortunately, the picture came into focus when we met our fourth partner and gifted winemaker, Morgan Twain Peterson.

 

For much more information or to join their mailing list, visit their website.

 

My Tasting Note

The wine is a deep garnet to purple color.  The enticing nose has blackberries, crushed stone minerals, smoked meat, dried herbs, dark roast espresso, dying wood embers, bacon fat and violets.  This has medium to full body, moderate to solid tannins and very good acidity.  On the palate the berries and smoked meat hit first with nice dried herbs, cherries, crushed stones and some earthiness coming in later.  The finish is fairly long and nicely layered with the fruit, wood embers and dried herbs seeming to last forever.  For such a young wine, this is drinking very nicely today but it has the balance to last in the cellar for many years.  An outstanding first release.  (94 pts)

2011 Lacuna Wines Proprietary Red Blend

2011 Lacuna Wines Proprietary Red Blend

 

 

 

2004 Bodegas y Viñedos Montecastro y Llanahermosa Ribera del Duero – $28.73

I was in the mood for something a little different today.  A lot of people prefer a Rioja from Spain, but to me the Ribera del Duero is THE destination for outstanding Spanish wines.

 

I bought several of these a number of years ago and opened one WAY too young.  It was enjoyable but needed a couple more years in the cellar.  It’s time to see if I was able to keep my hands off it long enough.

 

My Tasting Note

The wine is a deep, dark ruby color.  The open and inviting nose is full of black cherries, dark bittersweet chocolate, smoke, well worn leather, blackberries, warm baking spices, and violets.  This has medium body, fairly solid tannins and very good acidity.  On the palate spicy berries and cherries fly out of the gate with some building dark chocolate coming in on the back end.  The finish is very long and full of spicy cherries and dark chocolate.  Very tasty today but absolutely no hurry on this one.  (92 pts)

2004 Bodegas y Viñedos Montecastro Ribera del Duero Montecastro y Llanahermosa

2004 Bodegas y Viñedos Montecastro Ribera del Duero Montecastro y Llanahermosa

 

 

2011 Elyse Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley – $29.99

This wine is a blend of 76% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Cabernet Franc, 6% Malbec, 5% Petite Sirah, 3% Merlot and 2% Petit Verdot from Mitchell, York Creek, Camusi and Lynch Vineyards.  The wine was aged for 18 months in American and French oak (40% new).

 

The wine is a deep ruby red color.  The tempting nose has cassis, baking spices, cedar, dusty minerals, vanilla, raspberries, violets, tobacco and just a hint of an herbal note.  This has medium to full body with moderate to solid tannins and very nice acidity.  On the palate spicy cassis, cedar and dusty minerals come on hard on the front end with vanilla and raspberries coming in on the back end.  The finish add a pleasant herbal note and more spice.  This is on the young side and it has the balance to age gracefully but that doesn’t stop it from being very tasty today.  This has 13.8% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (91 pts)

2011 Elyse Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley

2011 Elyse Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley

 

 

2011 Casey Flat Ranch Open Range – $8.70

This wine is a blend of 68% Syrah, 14% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Petite Sirah, 6% Mourvedre and 1% Merlot.  The grapes for this wine was bought from various North Coast growers combined with some from the estate vineyards.  A total of 2,954 cases were produced.

 

The wine is a deep purple color.  The inviting nose has blackberries, crushed stones, white pepper, cherries, cocoa powder and roasted leafy herbs.  This has medium to full body with soft to moderate tannins and nice acidity.  This is rich and velvety on the palate with crushed berries, cherries, white pepper and crushed stones hitting first followed by dark chocolate.  The finish has decent length with some roasted herbs coming into play.  This isn’t very complex and isn’t made to age but it is very tasty.  This is an easy drinker to enjoy with a week day meal of by itself with friends.  This has a twist off cap and has 14.8% alcohol.  (88 pts)

2011 Casey Flat Ranch Open Range

2011 Casey Flat Ranch Open Range

 

 

 

2014 Château de Campuget Costières-de-Nîmes Rosé Tradition de Campuget – $12.59

This wine is a blend of 70% Syrah and 30% Grenache Noir.

 

The wine is a bright salmon pink color.  The sexy and inviting nose has cherries, strawberries, dusty minerals, orange blossoms, lemon zest, white pepper and a hint of dry earth.  This has light to medium body with crisp acidity and just a hint of sweetness.  On the palate bright fruit and minerals jump out first, followed by white pepper and orange blossoms.  The long finish adds some subtle earthiness and a cleansing twist of lemon.  This is the essence of Spring in a bottle.  Load up on this one if you see it at a good price.  This has 13.0% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a twist off cap.  (90 pts)

2014 Château de Campuget Costières-de-Nîmes Rosé Tradition de Campuget

2014 Château de Campuget Costières-de-Nîmes Rosé Tradition de Campuget

 

 

2007 Westerhold Family Vineyards Syrah Westerhold Vineyard – $42.00

This is a wine I tried due to Russell Bevan being the winemaker.  It absolutely blew me away.  I quickly ordered more and put the word out on Twitter.  I suggested to Jeb Dunnuck that he should track down a bottle to try, he then gave it 95+ on his The Rhone Report.  A wine store owner friend from Napa (yes, you Carrie) bought some for the store based on my recommendation, and had to restock since it became very popular.  I’m not sure the status of the winery’s mailing list, but I’d recommend checking to see if it is still open.

 

My Tasting Note

The wine is a deep, dark maroon color.  The intense nose has blackberries, smoked meat, black pepper, charcoal, dark bittersweet chocolate, dried herbs, minerals, melted licorice, baking spices, and a nice floral note.  This has a fairly full body, solid ripe tannins and very good acidity.  This is lush and ripe on the palate but not really pushing the ripeness to the edge.  The palate shows nice peppery berries, licorice, and some smoked meat with baking spices and dried herbs in the background.  The finish is very long and highlights the fruit initially but as the fruit slowly fades, the savory elements keep going.  Still extremely young but already outstanding.  (95 pts)

2007 Westerhold Family Vineyards Syrah Westerhold Vineyard

2007 Westerhold Family Vineyards Syrah Westerhold Vineyard

 

 

Connect with me

You can follow me on Twitter for more wine info, potential food pairings, and an occasional recipe or two.  Be warned, I’m also a sports fan and there are occasional Pittsburgh Penguins, Steelers, and Pirates tweets.  I attended the University of South Carolina, so during football season, there will also be some Gamecock posts.

 

If you like this post, consider joining Cliffs Wine Picks Wine Blog on Facebook and giving me a Like.

 

Cheers!

 

 

This is original to CliffsWinePicks.com.  Copyright 2015 Cliff’s Wine Picks.

All rights reserved.

 

 

 

***** Shameless Self Promotion *****

 

Here is a link to a YouTube video of me getting “coal” from Santa for being named the “Nicest Person in Social Media” in 2012.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UOvQTeGR3-c

 

 

 

Breaking news from Klout:

Klout

 

 

Cliff’s Wine Picks mentions or other posts

Here are posts, newsletters, blogs or other articles that either mention this site or that I have written:

 

Click here or on the “Cliff’s Wine Picks On Other Sites” link in the top right corner to see links to other sites that either have my reviews, my thoughts or other posts I have written.

 

 

 

Remember to support your local wine store!

 

 

 

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Notes – I use the “official” Cellar Tracker name for the wines.  I use Cellar Tracker to help manage and organize my cellar.  I highly recommend checking it out at www.cellartracker.com.  Loading you existing cellar is a lot less intimidating than it would first appear.  There is a good chance 99% of your wine is already in the system, so you generally only need to enter part of the wine’s name and the system will find it for you.

 

 

Prices noted are the prices I paid at the time of purchase.  I don’t shop around to find the best prices, but always check out the sale and close out items when in a store.  Wines purchased direct from a winery do not include any shipping charges.  None of the prices include the sales tax.

 

 

All wines that were sent to me free of charge to sample will be noted and I will show suggested prices when available.

 

 

 

Cheers!

 

Wine of the Week – 2010 Lacuna Wines Proprietary Red Blend

 

 

Each week I pick out one wine to highlight as my wine of the week.  This wine may be an outstanding wine, a great value or just something very interesting.

 

 

Lacuna-Label-Front

 Overview

Lacuna is a winery I “found” only because Morgan Twain-Peterson is their wine maker.  This would have probably gone unnoticed until Morgan’s name jumped out at me.  Morgan Twain-Peterson is the owner/winemaker for Bedrock Wine Company.  He also is the son of Joel Peterson of Ravenswood fame.

 

Don’t miss the special deal the winery is offering below in the Special Bonus Offer area. 

 

The Winery

Our small partnership group is comprised of 3 industry friends.  None of us with any claim to fame so our names remain in the background behind our rock-star winemaker!  One of us operates a Burgundy and Bordeaux import company, the other two of us are active in the sales and marketing efforts of several wineries in California.  We’ve all worked as wine consultants.  I have worked as a sommelier in what now seems like a past life!  We all have young children and work very hard to balance the demands of juggling multiple jobs (including Lacuna) with being attentive fathers.  We are fortunate to work in our field of passion and interest and feel absolutely privileged to have the talents of Morgan Twain-Peterson on board.  He is just as enjoyable of a person as he is talented a winemaker!

 

The Wine

The 2010 is a slightly atypical wine for Lacuna.  We experimented with a much higher percentage of Petite Sirah(42%)  from 120 year old Sonoma vines than we ever had before and likely will ever again.  Not that we were entirely unhappy with the result but given our cool vineyard sources for our Syrah, Lacuna certainly exists in a more savory band-width than many other wines based on this varietal.  Our goal that year was to add some structure to the wine which philosophically all the partners at Lacuna agree is one of the cornerstones of serious red wine.  The classic European wines that we are drawn to all have an elevated element of structure (both acid and tannin).  The old vine Petite was a successful addition to achieve this but our discovery was that it sent the wine in a backwards direction on the palate took quite some time to get to an optimal “drinkability” state.  In subsequent vintages we used techniques like whole cluster fermentations with our Syrah to achieve desired levels of spice and added structure.  We found this to work ideally for us in every way and have continued with high percentages of stem inclusion in the ’11, ’12 & ’13 vintages.

 

 

bottle-shop

 

2010 Lacuna Wines Proprietary Red Blend – $28.99

This is a blend of 58% cool climate Syrah and 42% Petite Sirah from 120 year old vines.

 

The wine has 14.3% alcohol by volume and the bottle is closed with a natural cork.

 

My Tasting Note

The wine is a deep purple color.  The very powerful nose has blackberries, smoked meat, dying wood embers, licorice, roasted herbs, dried violets, blueberries, warm baking spices, vanilla, black peppercorns, and a hint of eucalyptus.  This has a full body, a solid wall of tannins and good acidity.  On the palate the smoked meat, pepper and roasted herbs initially grab hold before slowly and reluctantly allowing some fruit and spice to enter the picture.  On the back end the smoked meat and wood embers re-emerge.  The finish is surprisingly long with layers of tannins clinging to your palate.  Give this monster a few years in the cellar or as they say, “serve it with a slab of rare brontosaurus”.  (94 pts)

2010 Lacuna Wines Proprietary Red Blend

2010 Lacuna Wines Proprietary Red Blend

 

In Summary

Don’t open this expecting a soft, fruity, easy drinking California Syrah, you’ll be disappointed.  If you set your sights on a big, meaty, chewy Northern Rhone bottle of Syrah, you won’t be disappointed.  The large Petite Sirah content adds considerable muscle to this wine and helps push the fruit component a little into the background.  The fruit is there, just not up front and in your face.  In my opinion, this is very drinkable today with a chunk of rare to medium rare meat, but I like a solid wall of tannins.  That said, this will be much better down the road.  If you can, stash this in the back of your cellar for a few years, you will be very handsomely rewarded for your patience.

 

Special Bonus Offer

This wine was previously thought to be sold out but the partners found a few cases in their personal “library stash”.  The wine is not on their website, but is available to readers of Cliff’s Wine Picks.  The wine is available for $28.99 a bottle (plus shipping and applicable taxes) by e-mailing info@lacunawines.com.   That price is the same as the winery’s current release.  Like I said, this wine is not available on the winery’s website.  This is coming from their personal library and is available only via this offer.

 

 

 

Connect with me

You can follow me on Twitter for more wine info, potential food pairings, and an occasional recipe or two.  Be warned, I’m also a sports fan and there are occasional Pittsburgh Penguins, Steelers, and Pirates tweets.  I attended the University of South Carolina, so during football season, there will also be some Gamecock posts.

 

If you like this post, consider joining Cliffs Wine Picks Wine Blog on Facebook and giving me a Like.

 

Cheers!

 

 

This is original to CliffsWinePicks.com.  Copyright 2013 Cliff’s Wine Picks.

All rights reserved.

 

 

 

***** Shameless Self Promotion *****

 

Here is a link to a YouTube video of me getting “coal” from Santa for being named the “Nicest Person in Social Media” in 2012.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UOvQTeGR3-c

 

 

 

Breaking news from Klout:

Klout

 

 

 

Remember to support your local wine store!

 

 

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

Notes – I use the “official” Cellar Tracker name for the wines.  I use Cellar Tracker to help manage and organize my cellar.  I highly recommend checking it out at www.cellartracker.com.  Loading you existing cellar is a lot less intimidating than it would first appear.  There is a good chance 99% of your wine is already in the system, so you generally only need to enter part of the wine’s name and the system will find it for you.

 

 

Prices noted are the prices I paid at the time of purchase.  I don’t shop around to find the best prices, but my local store is usually VERY competitive.  I generally get case discounts, and since I work there part time, I get a 5% discount.  Wines purchased direct from a winery do not include any shipping charges.  None of the prices include the sales tax.

 

 

All wines that were sent to me free of charge to sample will be noted and I will show suggested prices when available.

 

 

 

Cheers!

 

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